The Spirit of Goodwill in Times of Tragedy
January 06, 2017
In times of tragedy, the spirit of goodwill is ready to respond.
On Dec. 23, a fire at Kissimmee’s Unno Boutique Hotel left more than 200 people homeless, including many area residents renting rooms on a long-term basis. Thankfully, no one was injured, yet the losses felt by these individuals cannot be overstated.
Amid this trying situation, Orlando’s philanthropic spirit lifted many grieving hearts. Many community organizations came together and provided immediate relief, including the Osceola Council on Aging, which became a centralized channel for donations. Local hospitality organizations (Disney, Westgate, etc.) also stepped in to offer housing to victims, and nonprofit agencies provided numerous avenues of support, including case management services courtesy of the Community Hope Center in Kissimmee and the American Red Cross.
At Goodwill, we’re honored to be among those extending a helping hand. Soon after the fire, the Osceola Council on Aging’s auditorium was filled from floor to ceiling with clothing, household items and other generous donations from the community. Those affected by the fire had the opportunity to take as many items as they needed.
Afterward, the Council on Aging asked Goodwill to pick up the leftover donations in order to regain use of this auditorium, which is needed to serve seniors in Osceola County. These items now have a second life in Goodwill’s stores, benefiting Goodwill’s job training and placement programs for Central Floridians.
In addition, Goodwill provided $2,750 in store vouchers, so that those affected by the fire can buy anything else they need, such as housewares, clothing or shoes. Having a chance to shop for these items is particularly helpful to those who couldn’t find specific things or sizes they needed at the Council on Aging.
Emergency situations such as the fire at UNNO are an unfortunate reality of life. Here in Florida, hurricanes often pose significant threats to the well-being of our community as well. In times of trouble, Goodwill is committed to providing urgent response and support.
Goodwill Industries of Central Florida has been Building Lives That Work in Central Florida for nearly 60 years, and last year we placed over 7,500 individuals in jobs. Our vision is to be satisfied with our work only when every person in our community we are privileged to serve has an opportunity to develop to his or her fullest potential and enjoy a maximum of abundant living. Whatever trials in life may come, the spirit of Goodwill will always be ready to respond.
Goodwill's Operation GoodJobs for Veterans Receives Grant Renewal
July 26, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Mary Tindall
Office: (407) 657-4818
Cell: (407) 431-6430
GOODWILL’S OPERATION GOODJOBS MARKS SUCCESSFUL PILOT YEAR
WITH RENEWED FEDERAL FUNDING
Program for Homeless Veterans Expands to Lake County
ORLANDO, Fla.(July 25, 2016) – Goodwill Industries of Central Florida recently received a grant of nearly $280,000 from the U.S. Department of Labor to continue to provide employment and supportive services for local homeless veterans.
Goodwill is the only nonprofit in Central Florida to receive this grant, which is part of a $36 million grant package awarded to nonprofits across the country through the Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program. The program aims to help an estimated 17,000 service-members nationwide transition to sustainable housing and good civilian jobs.
In the past year, Goodwill’s Operation GoodJobs for Homeless Veterans served more than 120 veterans in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. Due to the success of the program in its pilot year, Operation GoodJobs is now expanding to Lake County.
Through Operation GoodJobs, Goodwill delivers employability skills training and specialized job placement. Veterans are placed in various positions with local employers., After placement, Goodwill provides follow-along services for nine months to ensure that participants are stably employed and housed. The grant also includes funds for training, clothing, tools, identification and transportation assistance.
“Goodwill has a long legacy of serving veterans in our community as they reintegrate into civilian life,” said Bill Oakley, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Central Florida. “We are incredibly proud of every veteran who has pursued a stable career with the support of Operation GoodJobs, and we look forward to expanding this program into Lake County to assist even more people in the coming year.”
For more information, visit www.goodwill.org.
Goodwill Opens Two New Stores in Central Florida
June 09, 2016
Goodwill Industries recently opened two new retail stores – in Goldenrod (South Orlando area) and in Eustis. Both stores are brand new construction, using 99.9% American made materials.
The Goldenrod store is brand new to the area, and is located at the corner of Hoffner and Goldenrod Road. With over 12,500 square feet of selling space each, both stores are stocked full with slightly used items. Customers are delighted with the selection of merchandise, which ranges from shoes to toys to housewares to wedding apparel and decor, and the prices are unbelievable.
The Eustis store replaces the current store located at 276 W. Ardice Ave., in Eustis.
Come visit us at our new locations! You’ll be amazed!